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Filipino PrimitiveAccumulation and Resistance in the American Museum$
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Sarita Echavez See

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781479842667

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479842667.001.0001

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Lessons from the Illiterate

Lessons from the Illiterate

Carlos Bulosan and the Staged Wages of Romance

Chapter:
(p.99) 3 Lessons from the Illiterate
Source:
Filipino Primitive
Author(s):

Sarita Echavez See

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9781479842667.003.0004

Carlos Bulosan’s story “The Romance of Magno Rubio” is about the plight of an illiterate Filipino field worker in Depression-era California going deeper and deeper into debt in order to woo a white American woman. This chapter argues that the story and its contemporary staged adaptation powerfully subvert accumulative values while also introducing a Filipino American alternative economy based on reciprocity and non-accumulation. The illiterate character Magno Rubio shows us how to read.

Keywords:   Asian American theater, Filipino Americans, Carlos Bulosan, debt, migrant agricultural laborers, financial crises

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